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Golden Princess Seattle missed the ship

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It wasn't us......but husband and I were down at the pier today watching the Golden and Holland America's Oosterdam prepare to sail away. We got down there around 3:30 and at that point there was a Shuttle Express roaring through the parking lot to drop people off, a couple cabs and a private car. We watched as everyone on board disappeared to do the muster drill and we watched the HAL ship sail away. At a few minutes after 4:00 as the ship was just pulling away from the dock a taxi came speeding in, horn honking....but it was too late. Husband and I felt so awful, they were so close. We could see that there was someone from the pier (from Princess???) with a radio but it was just too late. Not sure what will happen to those four people, if they'll have to fly to the first port or what. We headed home to West Seattle and went to the viewpoint to see if they were able to charter a boat OR SOMETHING to get them on the ship but it didn't look like it. My heart really went out to them. I would assume they were stuck in traffic - the downtown area of I-5 is under major construction for these next two weeks and traffic looked like it was just stopped.

 

If this was your friends or family, please post and let us know how they fared.

 

If you are coming in tomorrow or the next few weeks be sure to mapquest a few different routes to the pier to give to your cab driver in case traffic is backed up. I know the cab drivers should know but there have been plenty of times a cabbie has claimed they don't know where to take us, like from LAX to Long Beach pier and that's with normal traffic.

 

I posted this in the Princess section also, just to remind everyone to plan for heavier then normal traffic.

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That is so sad, and I feel awful for those people.

 

I was in Seattle the first week of the construction, and the local media has terrified Puget Sounders away from I-5. Traffic was much lighter than normal every time I was on it (once at rush hour). But I wouldn't count on that holding; people are already coming back to the freeway. And yes, anyone driving I-5 needs to have an alternate route in mind.

 

In any case, let this be a cautionary tale. We don't know how these poor folks happened to be cutting it so close. Maybe they did get stuck in Puget Sound traffic, which can be awful anywhere, not just I-5. Maybe they flew in the day of the cruise and their flight was delayed. Maybe they were sight-seeing in beautiful Seattle, and the time just slipped away. Sadly, in all of these scenarios, missing their ship was foreseeable, and preventable.

 

Don't play Russian roulette with your cruise. Assume that all transportation is going to take far, far longer than it should. Plan on being at the dock at the EARLIEST possible time, not the LATEST possible time. A night-before hotel is the best investment in stress-reduction that I know.

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That's so sad. My hubby's usually pulling us out the door in the am even when we're driving to our nearest port (we live about 50 miles from San Pedro). We rather get on the ship as early as possible (even tho' hubby hates standing in line).

 

When we were planning our Alaskan cruise three years ago, we booked Amtrak, instead of a flight. But we purposedly planned to get into Seattle Friday night for the Sunday cruise. And even then, the train was running late and we arrived just before midnight. We were glad to have the next day to relax and shop for anything we didn't schlep on the train.

 

When we were sightseeing that Saturday in our rental car, we noticed that Terminal 30 was right near the sports stadiums. Apparently a baseball game had just ended and the traffic was heavy, so we decided not to take any chances the next day and leave our hotel by 10 or so.

 

We also arranged a couple of days post-cruise so we can continue our vacation in Seattle and were glad we did.

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We were parked near the fence by the ship and when we heard that cab come tearing through with the horn honking we felt helpless knowing those poor people missed the boat. Indeed it could have been anything, heck it could have been they live 10 minutes away and figured if the ship leaves at 4:00 they'll get there at 4:00 - obviously not cruisecritic members! Either way it's a good warning for others.

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We were on the Grand Princess in the British Isles last month and two evenings there were announcements requesting passengers in specific cabins to let the Purser know if they were on board. We waited in both instances until the passengers arrived. I didn't see them arrive, so I don't know if we left later than we would have (our captain tended to be late leaving port - he was replaced mid-cruise).

 

Sometimes, I guess they wait.

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That is so sad, and I feel awful for those people.

 

I was in Seattle the first week of the construction, and the local media has terrified Puget Sounders away from I-5. Traffic was much lighter than normal every time I was on it (once at rush hour). But I wouldn't count on that holding; people are already coming back to the freeway. And yes, anyone driving I-5 needs to have an alternate route in mind.

 

In any case, let this be a cautionary tale. We don't know how these poor folks happened to be cutting it so close. Maybe they did get stuck in Puget Sound traffic, which can be awful anywhere, not just I-5. Maybe they flew in the day of the cruise and their flight was delayed. Maybe they were sight-seeing in beautiful Seattle, and the time just slipped away. Sadly, in all of these scenarios, missing their ship was foreseeable, and preventable.

 

Don't play Russian roulette with your cruise. Assume that all transportation is going to take far, far longer than it should. Plan on being at the dock at the EARLIEST possible time, not the LATEST possible time. A night-before hotel is the best investment in stress-reduction that I know.

 

We almost missed a cruise in 2000, so ever since then we fly in the day before the cruise and head to the cruise ship before noon for 4pm boarding. We now have lunch in the ship's buffet and it's more relaxing.

 

We'd almost missed our ship because of airline problems. We had a 5am flight that was cancelled, then the 7am flight had mechanical problems so it was 8am before we departed. We'd missed our connecting flight and our next one was delayed 45 minutes by weather-related problems. Luckily we had carry-on luggage and had been upgraded by the airline to first class on our 2nd flight as compensation for the cancelled & delayed flights, so we were first off the plane, and our taxi driver drove like the wind (got a nice tip from us). Even so, we barely boarded in time. They were removing the gangplank as we ran up. So, never again do we fly in the same day, even when it looks as if we have plenty of time. Too many possibilities can go wrong with flights.

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I would never ever try to get to a cruise on the same day I'm flying in. That being said this post is from many yrs ago, so it sounds like Seattle is still having major freeway construction. Not true, just normal congestion like always.

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OP- Cruise ships are required to transmit their manifest to TSA 60 minutes before departure...so cruiselines require everyone to be checked in 90 minutes prior. It's emphasized in the cruise docs. The latecomers were unfortunately out of luck even if they were earlier. At intermediate ports, passengers can arrive at the last minute (they may even lower the gangway) since they are already on the manifest.

 

Also they couldn't hire a speedboat to catch up to the ship since they were not on the electronic manifest and were not security screened along with their luggage. Just the times we live in....their only option was to fly to the next port.

 

Very unfortunate consequence that sometimes happens when arriving "day of".

Edited by kenish

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That was so sad :( I feel very awful for the people who are left by the ship I'm sure they ave missed an important part of their lives.

 

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Edited by Mark Mcneil

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west coast ports are a bit away from Florida. You may tri the East coast departure forum

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Also they couldn't hire a speedboat to catch up to the ship since they were not on the electronic manifest and were not security screened along with their luggage. Just the times we live in....their only option was to fly to the next port.

I actually think that boarding at, say, Ketchikan on a Seattle round-trip itinerary would be prohibited by the Passenger Services Act. The law allows round trips to/from the same US port provided the ship's itinerary includes a stop in a "near" foreign port, which the Seattle boats manage by stopping in Victoria. To carry passengers between two different US ports requires a stop in a "distant" foreign port. Canadian and Mexican ports are not considered "distant" under the terms of the PSA. So boarding (late) at Ketchikan and disembarking a few days later back in Seattle would mean the pax are basically doing a one-way cruise between US ports, contrary to the law.

 

Now the cruise line MIGHT allow this provided the pax pay the fine that would be levied against the cruise line ($200 or $300 per person IIRC) but they might also say no.

 

Otherwise I'd bet the best they could hope for is some sort of credit against a future cruise, and even that would be voluntary on the cruise line's part.

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I actually think that boarding at, say, Ketchikan on a Seattle round-trip itinerary would be prohibited by the Passenger Services Act. The law allows round trips to/from the same US port provided the ship's itinerary includes a stop in a "near" foreign port, which the Seattle boats manage by stopping in Victoria. To carry passengers between two different US ports requires a stop in a "distant" foreign port. Canadian and Mexican ports are not considered "distant" under the terms of the PSA. So boarding (late) at Ketchikan and disembarking a few days later back in Seattle would mean the pax are basically doing a one-way cruise between US ports, contrary to the law.

 

Now the cruise line MIGHT allow this provided the pax pay the fine that would be levied against the cruise line ($200 or $300 per person IIRC) but they might also say no.

 

Otherwise I'd bet the best they could hope for is some sort of credit against a future cruise, and even that would be voluntary on the cruise line's part.

 

Yes, they WILL allow it if you pay the $300 per person fine. Otherwise, no. That's why travel insurance is so important.

Edited by SeattleCruiselover

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west coast ports are a bit away from Florida. You may tri the East coast departure forum

 

 

???? this thread has been in the Western Destinations board for a reason. No one is talking about Florida, but the advice regarding flying in at least a day ahead of a cruise applies there too.

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There was a posting in this thread earlier today that asked questions about an east coast port, so apparently it has been moved by one of the moderators.

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I remember a couple of years ago when we were up in Ketchikan. We were set to leave at 4pm. At about 3:45 they started announcing names to please contact the Pursers office. At about 4:05 they blew the ships horn a couple of times. At 4:15 on the dot they pulled the gangway and the ship started breast out from the pier. We were about 4 feet out from the pier when 4 people came running down the pier, they tried to get the ship to stop and come back to let them on. We didn’t stop we continued on the Victoria BC, we picked them up in Victoria BC the next day. You could tell they weren’t happy cruisers.

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I remember a couple of years ago when we were up in Ketchikan. We were set to leave at 4pm. At about 3:45 they started announcing names to please contact the Pursers office. At about 4:05 they blew the ships horn a couple of times. At 4:15 on the dot they pulled the gangway and the ship started breast out from the pier. We were about 4 feet out from the pier when 4 people came running down the pier, they tried to get the ship to stop and come back to let them on. We didn’t stop we continued on the Victoria BC, we picked them up in Victoria BC the next day. You could tell they weren’t happy cruisers.

TWICE we've had this happen in Ketchikan. (We are ALWAYS on the top deck to watch the runners).

Last year a lady came just WALKING, not seeming to be in a hurry at all and carrying many bags from shopping. Just as we pulled away, her cabinmate (?) tossed her passport to her.

It seems some people think the ship WILL wait for them (perhaps they're more important than others).............and it doesn't seem right when the ship DOES. It sort of tells those who make it a point to return on time (posted right when you disembark) that they needn't really make the effort.;)

There have been some video postings on here of people frantically running and waving at the ship's captain as the ship pulls away.:(

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OP- Cruise ships are required to transmit their manifest to TSA 60 minutes before departure...so cruiselines require everyone to be checked in 90 minutes prior. It's emphasized in the cruise docs. The latecomers were unfortunately out of luck even if they were earlier. At intermediate ports, passengers can arrive at the last minute (they may even lower the gangway) since they are already on the manifest.

 

Also they couldn't hire a speedboat to catch up to the ship since they were not on the electronic manifest and were not security screened along with their luggage. Just the times we live in....their only option was to fly to the next port.

 

Very unfortunate consequence that sometimes happens when arriving "day of".

 

Not that I would ever encourage someone to cut it close on embarkation, but it isn't set in stone that you must be checked in 90 minutes prior to sailing. On the Imagination cruise I took last december, we nearly missed the ship because we had trouble finding our way back to the car rental drop off near MIA. It was a nightmare. Luckily we had completed the online pre-boarding, had a printout of it, and even though we were lost for over an hour - we finally got workable directions to the rental car place & they whisked us to the port. We got there 45 minutes before sail away. I got the number for Carnival at the port through guest services & called to let them know we were running behind - they said so long as we got there by 3:30 for the 4'o'clock sail away we would be ok. Still I was completely freaked out & white knuckled - it isn't my style to put off getting on board but friend wanted to see Miami, was first time cruiser & to her it was a waste of time getting on board early. On the shuttle to the port, there was a Mom & daughter planning to board too - she was totally nonchalant and said "it's no big deal. I always board about this time - this way no lines." My friend sort of smirked at me like I had made a big deal over nothing. :rolleyes:

 

Boarding that late did suck though. We would have had priority embark for being suite guests, so no reason to wait. Lido deck shutting down, wouldn't let us get in line - when I saw others who managed to sneak in line after we were turned away I got mad - at least one helpful worker finally told us we could still dine inside - just not at the station out poolside.

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videovideo

I would never ever try to get to a cruise on the same day I'm flying in. That being said this post is from many yrs ago, so it sounds like Seattle is still having major freeway construction. Not true, just normal congestion like always.

 

I agree :)

Edited by Americanlife

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The vehicle driver was honking as he sped into the port area? He thought the ship's captain would hear the horn and turn back? I don't think so. Imagine a shuttle or taxi driver roaring into an airport drop-off area with horn blaring, or late-arriving passengers thinking the plane will turn back once it's pulled away from the gate (in fact, once the gate is closed there's no more boarding, even if the plane hasnt yet pulled away). Yet one still sees questions here from people wondring if they should gamble on making a flight a short time after a ship is scheduled to arrive at a port. I readily agree that circumstances beyond a passenger's control can occur. When we took a cruise from Buenos Aires, several passengers coming from Florida missed the departure due to airline maintenance problems (several flights were grounded or delayed). Fortunately, they were able to fly into Montevideo instead and catch the ship the next day there. But if they'd missed that port, they would have been out of luck (there were no other ports easy to reach by air). Many people swear they never have problems arriving for a cruise on disembarkation day.

Edited by Fattony

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The vehicle driver was honking as he sped into the port area? He thought the ship's captain would hear the horn and turn back? I don't think so. Imagine a shuttle or taxi driver roaring into an airport drop-off area with horn blaring, or late-arriving passengers thinking the plane will turn back once it's pulled away from the gate

 

Thats right. It is impossible to hear it not mentioning the roaring sound of a plane when it takes of. +1 to the part where a vehicle would be able to follow a taking off plane.

 

 

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Incredibly, and I am sure that honking the horn would make no difference, but I have seen you tubes of cruise ships pulling back to the dock to pick up a late passenger. Don't know why the captain did it, but he did. The ships was still very close though.

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I have never heard of missing a cruise by being late,

We always arrive usually the day before or two days sometimes. We plan areas that we have not been before as well to take in local sights (that pleases the locals when you help out local economy). :)

We also board mid day instead of noon (I don't know about other cruises as we have onl cruised with NCL. But, get there early have an enjoyable lunch before casting off is always nice

SMT.

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I have never heard of missing a cruise by being late,

We always arrive usually the day before or two days sometimes. We plan areas that we have not been before as well to take in local sights (that pleases the locals when you help out local economy). :)

We also board mid day instead of noon (I don't know about other cruises as we have onl cruised with NCL. But, get there early have an enjoyable lunch before casting off is always nice

SMT.

 

The problem is that some people are new to cruising and don't realize that ships have to sail by a certain time. The captain may wait in some cases (for my last cruise, there was a plane full of Brits that were flying to LA but their flight left late due to bad weather there, and there was a raging rainstorm in LA that day too. The captain waited four and a half hours and that was it) but in other cases, can not due to the tide conditions or the port authority requiring the on time departure.

 

Some may feel if they book their air through the cruiseline, the ship will always wait (see the above example -- the Brits who did make it on the ship made their own arrangements or got a flight derivation and got to LA at least a day ahead). Not always true.

 

Some decide that they can't leave early (work, etc.) so they are willing to take the change.

 

I just wouldn't want to take the chance that my mode of transportation gets delayed due to any number of reasons (weather, mechanical, financial, labor,etc.) and I wouldn't want to risk getting stressed out at the start of my vacation. It sounds like you're the same. And many of us do warn others on cruising boards that our recommendation for pre-cruise travel is to arrive early.

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